Rear Adm. Fred W. Kacher is a native of Oakton, Virginia and graduated, with honors, from the United States Naval Academy in 1990 with a degree in English. He holds a Master’s in Public Policy with a concentration in International Relations from Harvard’s Kennedy School.
Among his sea tours, Kacher has served primarily on cruisers and destroyers, deploying multiple times as part of both the Atlantic and Pacific Fleets. At sea, he most recently served as commodore of Destroyer Squadron Seven, forward deployed to Southeast Asia. Previously, he served as the first commanding officer of USS Stockdale (DDG 106) which earned the Battle Efficiency Award in 2010. While he served as executive officer on USS Barry (DDG 52), the ship was selected for the Arleigh Burke Fleet Trophy as most improved ship in the Atlantic Fleet.
During Kacher’s first flag assignment, he served as executive officer to the Supreme Allied Commander, Europe and Commander, U.S. European Command (EUCOM). Other shore assignments include serving as chief of staff to Commander, Naval Surface Force, U.S. Pacific Fleet and as lead speechwriter and special assistant to the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. In earlier tours, he served as special assistant to the Secretary of the Navy and as deputy executive assistant to the Deputy Chief of Naval Operations for Information, Plans, and Strategy (N3/N5). In 2006, he was selected as a White House Fellow serving as director, Strategy and Resources on the Homeland Security Council at the White House.
He assumed duties as commander, Expeditionary Strike Group Seven in May 2019.
Kacher holds various individual and unit awards including multiple Battle Efficiency Awards earned by the crews he was honored to serve alongside. In 2005, Kacher was selected for the Admiral Elmo Zumwalt Award for visionary leadership after being nominated by members of USS Barry’s crew and in 2015 he was named as the recipient of the U.S. Navy League’s John Paul Jones Inspirational Leadership Award during his command of Destroyer Squadron Seven. A member of the Council on Foreign Relations, he is author of the book, Newly Commissioned Naval Officer’s Guide and co-author of the book, Naval Officer’s Guide to the Pentagon (U.S. Naval Institute Press).